AFP: The secretary general of the Gulf Cooperation Council on Monday delivered a protest note to Iran’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia over an Iranian cleric’s remarks on Bahrain, a GCC statement said.
RIYADH, July 18, 2011 (AFP) – The secretary general of the Gulf Cooperation Council on Monday delivered a protest note to Iran’s ambassador to Saudi Arabia over an Iranian cleric’s remarks on Bahrain, a GCC statement said.
Abdullatif Zayani gave Ambassador Mohammed Rasuli a note of “official protest from the Gulf Cooperation Council, totally rejecting the provocative and false claims in the Friday sermon of… Ayatollah Ahmed Janati against the kingdom of Bahrain,” the statement said.
The note also termed Janati’s remarks “blatant and unacceptable interference” in Bahrain’s internal affairs, and called on Iranian officials and the government to “stop issuing false and inflammatory statements” about Bahrain, saying this could harm “good, neighbourly relations.”
Ayatollah Ahmad Janati said during a Friday sermon on July 8 in Tehran that “the number of the prisoners is increasing day by day. The academics and physicians are fired… what does Bahrain want?”
“Their motto is each person a vote. Why should they be killed? The reconciliation meeting is a misdirection ploy. These plans bear no fruit,” he said of a national dialogue in Bahrain.
The Shiite Muslim majority in the tiny Gulf kingdom is ruled by the Sunni Muslim Al-Khalifa dynasty. The Islamic republic is mostly Shiite.
“Bahrain should be conquered by Islam and Muslims, and a day should come when Bahrain is ruled by Islam,” Janati said.
Manama, along with other Gulf states, has repeatedly accused Iran of interference in Bahrain in connection with Shiite-led pro-reform protests there that were crushed in a bloody March crackdown by security forces.
Iran slammed the crackdown on dissent in Bahrain, and the intervention of Saudi-led Gulf troops in the country, which freed up Bahraini security forces to smash the protesters.